Acting Officers

Headnotes: 

An officer designated by a department head pursuant to a statute to perform the duties of a presidential appointee has the same authority as the officer for whom he acts, and may serve for an indefinite period notwithstanding the 30-day limitation of the Vacancy Act, though while acting he is entitled only to the salary of his regular position. There are, however, a number of practical and political reasons why the designation of acting officers should not be used as a substitute for appointment by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

Potential infirmities in the authonty of the acting officer in any particular situation will be cured by the de facto officer rule.

Updated July 9, 2014